After coming close in their season opener, the Glasgow Tigers head into their first home game of the season knowing they are a better team than last season.
Their opponents this week have had a much different start to the season. The newly-rebranded Yorkshire Academy Rams went into the season as one of the favourites for the division title alongside the Northumberland Vikings.
Last year the Rams finished with a 6-4 record, missing out on the post-season. The Rams stumbled after a strong 3-0 start, but put up strong showings with a pair of wins against the Tigers including a victory to open the 2018 season.
With the appointment of BUCS National Championship winning coach Dale Bottomley, the South Leeds side issued a clear signal of intent ahead of the start of the season.
But the Rams proved that pre-season predictions aren’t worth the paper they’re written on when they fell to a shock 42-0 defeat to the newly promoted Aberdeen Roughnecks.
The Rams struggled to get their ground game going, and after being forced to look to the air they threw an interception as well as giving up a painful intentional grounding penalty in their own end one, leading to the fourth touchdown of the game for the Roughnecks.
Those offensive mistakes – as well as giving up four fumbles recovered by the Aberdeen defence – prevented the Rams offence from getting a foothold into the game and gave their opponents the chance to put their side to the sword.
Form doesn’t decide results
Despite the opening week defeat, Coach Bottomley’s side have put in the hours on the practice field and the Tigers go into the game knowing they will have to play at their best regardless of what’s gone before.
Both teams will look to cut down the errors that cost them in their openers, and the first match at the Tigers’ Nethercraigs home field in 2019 is sure to be a battle.